ATV/Off Road
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Poison Spider Mesa – Moab, Utah

Moab, Utah


Beautiful Red Rock, Colorado River, Little Arch, La Sal Mountains


19.2 mile lollipop loop

Parking Lot Elevation


Summit Elevation


Time Required

3-6 Hours





Water Info

None, bring your own

Best Season

Spring, Fall, Winter

Sun Exposure

100 percent in the sun. Be sure to come prepared

Trail Condition

Very rough 4x4 trail


At trail head

Visitor Center






GPS Coordinates:

Trail Head:38.53283N, 109.60900W
Golden Spike Turn:38.56200N, 109.59634W
Start of loop:38.56267N, 109.59383W
Turn to overlook:38.57383N, 109.59433W
Little Arch:38.56433N, 109.58750W

Trail Map

Driving Directions

The Trail:

Poison Spider Mesa is a very popular trail just outside Moab. It is located on the beginning part of the Potash Road. We did this on ATV’s, but it is also open to dirt bikes, 4×4’s, mountain bikes, and even hikers. You would need a fairly built 4×4 with at least 35 inch tires and preferably lockers. With that said it would be a heck of a lot of fun. We had a blast on ATV’s. This is a pretty advanced trail and I would not take beginners here. There are a lot of ledges and steep off camber climbs. My video does a pretty good job of showing some of the obstacles to expect. Just remember that videos give very little depth perception so the climbs are much steeper than they appear. If you are an experienced ATV rider you could probably do it on a sport quad but 4×4 is definitely best. The trail starts out going up several rocky loose switchbacks.


After the switchbacks you will see a small sign to a scenic overlook. I recommend taking it because there are awesome views of the Colorado River.

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Once on top of the mesa you will always have great views of the La Sal Mountains, and the classic Moab fins.


The next section will be the most technical part of the trail starting with the waterfall, and ending with the wedgie. Here is some of what you can expect.

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There are several climbs that could only be done in much larger vehicles with longer wheel bases. Here is an example of these. There are always paths around these areas.

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Here is a short video showing what you can expect out of the obstacles.

There was even one pretty good sized sand dune that was fun to play in.


After the most technical spots you will see signs for the Golden Spike Trail. Make sure you stay to the right here. Golden Spike is a VERY technical jeep trail. I have given the coordinates to the turn in the coordinates section. Shortly after the turn off is the beginning of the loop section. It can be done either way but I prefer clockwise. There is a signed turn for the scenic overlook. I included the coordinates and highly recommend taking it. The views are spectacular looking towards Moab.


You can also look to the north for great views of the Colorado River, and Arches National Park. I had fun seeing how many arches you could spot. I was able to spot Window Arch, Skyline Arch, and Balanced Rock.

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Proceeding back on the main trail you will see a very large pothole. It made for some cool pictures and was fun to good around in. There is also another signed overlook but it is very similar to the first and I think the first is better.

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The last main feature is called Little Arch. There is a small sign at the parking area for it.


It is a very short walk of about 100 yards to a great view of the pretty arch.

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If you want to take the time you can walk out to the arch. Be VERY careful and responsible if you do this. It would be a very long fall and it was very windy the day we were there.


Here is a view of the arch from below showing you how high the cliff is.

The Return:

From Little Arch you are almost back to the beginning of the loop section. You will have to back track through the obstacles and back to the parking area.


Personal Thoughts:

This trail is a whole lot of fun with lots of different sights to see and lots of fun obstacles. Regardless what you take to visit Poison Spider it would be an awesome place to visit!

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The Bottom Line

Difficulty is basically the length, duration and stress of the Trek. If the Trek is really long then it will receive a higher rating. If the Trek is short then it won't receive that high of a rating. However, difficulty rating also includes how tired we were at the end of the Trek.

Technicality is how strenuous the Trek is. If there is lots of bouldering or if there is bushwhacking involved then the rating will be higher. Technicality also includes if there are steep inclines or the need for ropes and other equipment.

Enjoyment is strictly how much fun we had doing the Trek. Regardless of how tired and exhausted we were, if we had a ton of fun doing the Trek then it will receive a higher rating.

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About The Author
I love adventure! I live in Cache Valley, Utah. Do you have questions on any of my Treks? Email me @

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